Jumio releases SDK for biometric passport authentication with new NFC feature

Jumio releases SDK for biometric passport authentication with new NFC feature

Traditional plastic identity documents can easily be falsified but biometric technology is increasingly adopted by governments to ensure document security and user authentication.

Jumio has released a new NFC feature that scans and collects information stored on a biometric passport’s chip, announced Dean Nicolls, Jumio’s Vice President of Global Marketing in a blog post. Nicolls points out that both Android and Apple smartphones can be used to read NFC tags that process data on passport chips.

The Jumio NFC-improved SDK for identity verification optimizes onboarding experience and prevents fraud through biometric passport support. To authenticate biometric passports, the NFC feature scans the passport’s data page, and then Jumio processes the data from the chip for verification. The NFC capability is spoof-proof, fully automates the verification process, supports electronic passports from 86 countries and is completely contactless, according to the post.

Biometric passports are equipped with a chip that stores the photograph, digital signature data and personal information, the exact same information printed on the passport’s main page. According to Nicolls, this feature makes them superior to plastic government-issued IDs.

Nicolls argues biometric passports are more complex, they use advanced encryption technology and are more reliable given the use of personal traits as main identification characteristics. They include “Security features which make it more difficult to change data recorded on a passport and to prevent unauthorized reading or skimming of data stored on the e-passport chip.”

Biometric passports provide a number of security benefits that could be integrated with government IDs in the future. Biometrics are more trustworthy than traditional photos or PIN codes. A modern passport includes a chip on the cover, sophisticated watermarks, Invisible Constant Information (ICI), 2D barcode, MRZ lines, and Invisible Personalized Information (IPI).

In July, Jumio reported biometrics and identity verification customers grew 100 percent in Q2 on year-over-year basis.

In August, payments company Sokin chose Jumio’s biometrics and document authentication technology to provide secure and compliant digital client onboarding.

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